Luke O’Toole’s and Baltinglass should be a belter
Luke O’Toole’s v Baltinglass Joule Park, Aughrim Sunday, 1pm. GAELIC football fans are in for a real treat this Sunday afternoon with the curtain raiser to the Renault Senior football championship final seeing two of the finest teams from anywhere in the county doing battle in the under-17 A football final from 1pm at Joule Park, Aughrim.
The footballers of Luke O’Toole’s will take on Baltinglass in the decider and going on the semi-finals which took place at the same time in Ballinakill last Saturday evening, we are in for a serious footballing treat come Sunday at 1pm.
Luke O’Toole’s emerged victorious from a stern test by a talented Blessington outfit in their semi-final. The final score of 1-14 to 3-05 should portray what a tough battle this was with a Padraig Murray goal after 24 minutes of the second half proving decisive in the end.
Blessington enjoyed a great start and they possess some seriously talented young footballers with Jordan McGarr, Ciaran Paton, Eoin Higgins, Brian Bohan and Craig Maguire all catching the eye.
The west side exploited something of a weakness in the Luke O’Toole rearguard which Baltinglass will hope to repeat and that is the harvesting of three goals with worrying ease.
Baltinglass came through a really entertaining battle with Clara Gaels on the pitch across the road from the Luke O’Toole’s game. Referee Pat Hickey took charge of this mighty struggle but he was badly let down with the absence of linesmen and, indeed, a fence.
A 3-15 to 2-08 final score suggests an easier passage for the Baltinglass men but they were tested all the way by the Clara Gaels outfit and will relish the chance to take on Luke O’Toole’s in what will be a wonderful occasion for each and every one of the young footballers.
There are major figures on both teams. The half-back line of Daniel Ging, Eoghan Byrne and Adam Hadden will be pivotal figures for the Luke O’Toole’s men. A vital figure last Saturday evening was Eoin Darcy who lined out at midfield but spent some of his time on the edge of the Blessington square and who is an exceptionally talented footballer.
Bradley Hickey, Ruairi Tompkins, Andy Foley, Pierce Lawlor, Matthew Ging and the very capable Padraig Murray will also feature prevalently in this enticing encounter.
Baltinglass boast some fine natural footballers. The west club are thriving at underage and this under-17 team is yet another very talented group to emerge on the conveyor belt.
Jason Steed, Chris Grimes and Patrick Whelan will look to nullify the attacking threat of the Luke O’Toole’s inside line and keeping Clara Gaels to 2-08 suggests that they are well able to manage that job.
Darragh Doyle, Karl Furlong, Sean Doody and John Keogh form a solid diamond in the middle third of the field and with Killian Kelly, Alan Barrett and Liam Fisher available for scoring duties not to mention the likes of Jack Hanlon, Tommy Keogh and Adam Germaine, this could be a high scoring affair come Sunday. Teams from the semi-finals: Luke O’Toole’s: Cathal Lambert; Fionn Furlong, Kevin Mulhall, Gearoid Donoghue; Daniel Ging, Eoghan Byrne, Adam Hadden; Eoin Darcy, James Hedderman; Bradley Hickey, Ruairi Tompkins, Andy Foley; Pierce Lawlor, Matthew Ging, Padraig Murray. Subs: Cian Moules, Daniel Hedderman, Cillian McDonald, Shaun Doyle.
Baltinglass: William Rogers; Jason Steed, Chris Grimes, Patrick Whelan; Diamantino Marcu, Darragh Doyle, Colm Keogh; Karl Furlong, Sean Doody; Taghg O’Toole, John Keogh, Jack Fleming; Killian Kelly, Alan Barrett, Liam Fisher. Subs: Jack Hanlon, Tommy Keogh, Adam Germaine, Alan Doyle, Jason Sinnott, Kabiru Matonmi.